Pub. date: 2010 | Online Pub. Date: December 16, 2009 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412971973 | Print ISBN: 9781412914321 | Online ISBN: 9781412971973| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Mike A. Crang
Urban settlements produce waste of multifarious kinds through their very functioning. The management of and failure to manage such wastes have often been taken as indexes of civilization— that is the spirit of civitas , and urban citizenship. Modern technologies have emphasized the hiding of waste and its removal far from the city as speedily and unobtrusively as possible. This distancing reflects the moral coding of waste—as both wasteful, shameful even, and thus symbolically contaminating those near it. The disappearance of waste may be said to lead to both a popular and academic oversight of waste in urban studies as a literally invisible issue. Wastes of various sorts reflect the human, animal, industrial, and social processes of urban life, and they have been intrinsic to the economies, cultures and societies of all cities. This entry will think through urban wastes in four ways. It will examine its spatial, then symbolic, ...